History WesternAnimation / WoodyWoodpecker

26th Sep '16 5:52:06 AM CaptainTedium
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However, the series got off to a rocky start, and it's easy to see why -- in Walter Lantz and Alex Lovy's attempts to imitate the fast paced slapstick of directors like Creator/TexAvery and Creator/BobClampett, they missed the mark -- the gags were often very derivative and juvenile (particularly the abundance of wordplay humor), the timing was floaty and mushy, and the animation, due in part to bad inkers and lousy inbetween work, was some of the sloppiest of any cartoon from the Golden Age. Lovy's haphazard direction and even pacing often undermined many gags, and kept the series from establishing a true identity for itself--and after the first couple shorts, Mel Blanc was forced to step down from the role of the Woodpecker upon getting an exclusive contract to Warner Bros cartoons, prompting Lantz to replace him with other voice actors, eventually settling on Ben Hardaway for years. Fortunately, matters improved when Lovy quit the studio and [[ShamusCulhane James "Shamus" Culhane]], an established [[Creator/FleischerStudios Fleischer]] and Disney animator, took over directorial duties, and improved the shorts considerably over Lovy's--the animation and staging got notably better with the aid of animation greats such as Creator/GrimNatwick and Emery Hawkins (although the shorts were still hampered by sloppy inkers and bad inbetween work), Woody's characterization became clearer, and the gags and pacing were improved, with the series starting moving away from being a WesternAnimation/LooneyTunes clone to being more of a chase and slapstick cartoon in the vein of series like ''WesternAnimation/TomAndJerry'', resulting in classics like ''WesternAnimation/TheBarberOfSeville'', ''Who's Cookin Who'' and ''Chew Chew Baby''. Also of note is was Culhane often abandoning the traditional storybook like watercolor backgrounds of earlier shorts in favor of minimalist, flat colored backgrounds--a very unique concept for shorts of the time. The only genuine criticism of his works would be that Woody was more prone to acting like a JerkAss than he did in the past.

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However, the series got off to a rocky start, and it's easy to see why -- in Walter Lantz and Alex Lovy's attempts to imitate the fast paced slapstick of directors like Creator/TexAvery and Creator/BobClampett, they missed the mark -- the gags were often very derivative and juvenile (particularly the abundance of wordplay humor), the timing was floaty and mushy, and the animation, due in part to bad inkers and lousy inbetween work, was some of the sloppiest of any cartoon from the Golden Age. Lovy's haphazard direction and even pacing often undermined many gags, and kept the series from establishing a true identity for itself--and after the first couple shorts, Mel Blanc was forced to step down from the role of the Woodpecker upon getting an exclusive contract to Warner Bros cartoons, prompting Lantz to replace him with other voice actors, eventually settling on Ben Hardaway for years. Fortunately, matters improved when Lovy quit the studio and [[ShamusCulhane James "Shamus" Culhane]], an established [[Creator/FleischerStudios Fleischer]] and Disney animator, took over directorial duties, and improved the shorts considerably over Lovy's--the animation and staging got notably better with the aid of animation greats such as Creator/GrimNatwick and Emery Hawkins (although the shorts were still hampered by sloppy inkers and bad inbetween work), Woody's characterization became clearer, and the gags and pacing were improved, with the series starting moving away from being a WesternAnimation/LooneyTunes clone to being more of a chase and slapstick cartoon in the vein of series like ''WesternAnimation/TomAndJerry'', resulting in classics like ''WesternAnimation/TheBarberOfSeville'', ''Who's Cookin Who'' and ''Chew Chew Baby''. Also of note is was Culhane often abandoning the traditional storybook like watercolor backgrounds of earlier shorts in favor of minimalist, flat colored backgrounds--a very unique concept for shorts of the time. The only genuine criticism of his works would be that Woody was more prone to acting like a JerkAss {{Jerkass}} than he did in the past.



* JerkAss: Pre-{{Flanderization}} Woody, especially in the Culhane-directed shorts. Also, Ms. Meany.

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* JerkAss: {{Jerkass}}: Pre-{{Flanderization}} Woody, especially in the Culhane-directed shorts. Also, Ms. Meany.



* LoanSharks: Woody encounters this in the short ''The Loan Stranger'', where his car crashes and goes kaput, so Woody manages to get a loan of one dollar from the nearby Sympathy Loan Company--but it later escalates to $365 in interest, not including the dollar he had yet to pay back. (justified, as Woody simply forgot to pay the loan back after 30 days.) The Loan Shark in question (who is a wolf[[note]]his species is an old visual shorthand for the phrase "wolf at your door"[[/note]]) tries everything in his power to get Woody to pay back the loan. Woody tricks him into calling off the loan when he thinks he smashed Woody's head--only for Woody to pop up and ask for a loan on his cuckoo clock, much to his chagrin.
* {{Long Runner|s}}: Woody first appeared in 1940 and new cartoons with the character were being made until Lantz shut down his studio in 1972, with a 30 year run. (Note that there was a hiatus between 1948-1950)

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* LoanSharks: LoanShark: Woody encounters this in the short ''The Loan Stranger'', where his car crashes and goes kaput, so Woody manages to get a loan of one dollar from the nearby Sympathy Loan Company--but it later escalates to $365 in interest, not including the dollar he had yet to pay back. (justified, as Woody simply forgot to pay the loan back after 30 days.) The Loan Shark in question (who is a wolf[[note]]his species is an old visual shorthand for the phrase "wolf at your door"[[/note]]) tries everything in his power to get Woody to pay back the loan. Woody tricks him into calling off the loan when he thinks he smashed Woody's head--only for Woody to pop up and ask for a loan on his cuckoo clock, much to his chagrin.
* {{Long Runner|s}}: Woody first appeared in 1940 and new cartoons with the character were being made until Lantz shut down his studio in 1972, with a 30 year run. (Note that there was a hiatus between 1948-1950)
chagrin.
4th Sep '16 3:14:50 PM nombretomado
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* ShoutOut: In the episode ''Automatic Woody'', the ATM from which Woody is trying to get money suddenly dons the persona and quotations of [[ASpaceOdyssey Hal 9000]].

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* ShoutOut: In the episode ''Automatic Woody'', the ATM from which Woody is trying to get money suddenly dons the persona and quotations of [[ASpaceOdyssey [[Film/TwoThousandOneASpaceOdyssey Hal 9000]].
6th Aug '16 3:00:49 PM morenohijazo
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* ScavengersAreScum: One of Woody's biggest enemies is Buzz Buzzard, a sleazy ConMan with a [[UsefulNotes/AmericanAccents gangster-like Joisey accent]] and [[RedEyesTakeWarning red eyes]].
29th Jul '16 10:44:43 AM HighCrate
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* ChekhovsGun: In ''Knock Knock'', it starts with Andy Panda asking his dad if you can really catch a woodpecker by pouring salt on his tail.[[note]]This is a variation of the idea that salt can be used as bait for birds.[[/note]] Andy does try to do this on Woody twice early in the short, but Woody is [[DangerouslyGenreSavvy too savvy to fall for it.]] The third time is the charm though, when Andy catches Woody laughing on the ground, and applies a big lump of salt on his tail that traps him in place.

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* ChekhovsGun: In ''Knock Knock'', it starts with Andy Panda asking his dad if you can really catch a woodpecker by pouring salt on his tail.[[note]]This is a variation of the idea that salt can be used as bait for birds.[[/note]] Andy does try to do this on Woody twice early in the short, but Woody is [[DangerouslyGenreSavvy too savvy smart to fall for it.]] it. The third time is the charm though, when Andy catches Woody laughing on the ground, and applies a big lump of salt on his tail that traps him in place.
26th Jul '16 8:44:00 AM Prinzenick
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* ThreeDimensionalEpisode: "Hypnotic Hick" was originally released in theaters as a 3-D cartoon, right at the height of the 3-D movie craze. The DVD collection uses a 2-D print of the film, so the only way to see it in its intended form is to try and find original prints of the film.
19th Jul '16 4:18:35 AM Prinzenick
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Despite this setback, his theatrical serials are still fondly remembered by classic animation fans and he is still the official mascot of {{Universal}} Studios to this day.[[note]]Though the position was stolen from him by ''WesternAnimation/AnAmericanTail'''s Fievel from the late 1980s into the 1990s- he then seemed to have earned it back, only for [[WesternAnimation/DespicableMe the Minions]] to snatch it from him in the 2010s.[[/note]] While the series was in a state of hiatus since then, a new CG feature length Woody Woodpecker feature, made by the studio Illumination, is [[http://www.cartoonbrew.com/feature-film/illumination-developing-cg-woody-woodpecker.html stated to be in the works.]] And as of October 2013, animator Bill Kopp, the creator of such shows as WesternAnimation/EekTheCat, [[http://blogs.indiewire.com/animationscoop/bill-kopp-signed-for-universals-woody-woodpecker is helming the project as director!]]

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Despite this setback, his theatrical serials are still fondly remembered by classic animation fans and he is still the official mascot of {{Universal}} Studios to this day.[[note]]Though the position was stolen from him by ''WesternAnimation/AnAmericanTail'''s Fievel from the late 1980s into the 1990s- he then seemed to have earned it back, only for [[WesternAnimation/DespicableMe the Minions]] to snatch it from him in the 2010s.[[/note]] While the series was in a state of hiatus since then, a new CG feature length Woody Woodpecker feature, made by the studio Illumination, is [[http://www.cartoonbrew.com/feature-film/illumination-developing-cg-woody-woodpecker.html stated to be in the works.]] And as of October 2013, animator Bill Kopp, the creator of such shows as WesternAnimation/EekTheCat, [[http://blogs.indiewire.com/animationscoop/bill-kopp-signed-for-universals-woody-woodpecker is helming the project as director!]]
director!]] Universal is also working on a [[http://www.cartoonbrew.com/feature-film/universal-making-live-actioncg-woody-woodpecker-feature-brazilians-141553.html live action/CGI hybrid feature]], but currently it is only planned for a release in Brazil--it is unclear if its the final result of the original movie project or its a separate project altogether.
17th Jul '16 1:01:35 PM morenohijazo
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* BeakAttack: Woody uses his beak in much the same way real woodpeckers do, to peck on trees, but he's not above pecking the heads of adversaries just for the hell of it.
27th Jun '16 2:28:44 PM Prinzenick
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* AllDevouringBlackHoleLoanSharks: The fox in the short ''The Loan Stranger''.

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* AllDevouringBlackHoleLoanSharks: The fox LoanSharks: Woody encounters this in the short ''The Loan Stranger''.Stranger'', where his car crashes and goes kaput, so Woody manages to get a loan of one dollar from the nearby Sympathy Loan Company--but it later escalates to $365 in interest, not including the dollar he had yet to pay back. (justified, as Woody simply forgot to pay the loan back after 30 days.) The Loan Shark in question (who is a wolf[[note]]his species is an old visual shorthand for the phrase "wolf at your door"[[/note]]) tries everything in his power to get Woody to pay back the loan. Woody tricks him into calling off the loan when he thinks he smashed Woody's head--only for Woody to pop up and ask for a loan on his cuckoo clock, much to his chagrin.
27th Jun '16 8:28:08 AM Prinzenick
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You can find more info on the woodpecker on the [[http://lantz.goldenagecartoons.com/ Walter Lantz Cartune Encyclopedia.]]
27th Jun '16 8:25:07 AM Prinzenick
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Thankfully, many of the early theatrical Woody Woodpecker shorts up to the late 1950s have been compiled into a two-volume set of DVD collections called '''The Woody Woodpecker and Friends Classic Cartoon Collection: The Walter Lantz Archive''' which also has several other Universal cartoon character shorts thrown in, including Andy Panda, Chilly Willy and Oswald the Lucky Rabbit (the post-Disney shorts done by Walter Lantz, anyway). The [=DVDs=] are also reasonably priced, which is a great alternative to more expensive sets like "Walt Disney Treasures" and "Looney Tunes Golden Collection". And don't try to cut even more corners hoping to get one of those mediocre [[VanillaEdition public domain cartoon collections]] to get them. The only one of Woody's shorts you'll ever find in those is "Pantry Panic", which is the only Woody Woodpecker cartoon in the public domain to date.

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Thankfully, many Many of the early theatrical Woody Woodpecker shorts up to the late 1950s have been compiled into a two-volume set of DVD collections called '''The Woody Woodpecker and Friends Classic Cartoon Collection: The Walter Lantz Archive''' which also has several includes shorts starring other Universal cartoon character shorts thrown in, including shorts, such as Andy Panda, Chilly Willy and Walter Lantz Oswald the Lucky Rabbit (the post-Disney shorts done by Walter Lantz, anyway). The [=DVDs=] are also reasonably priced, which is a great alternative to more expensive sets like "Walt Disney Treasures" and "Looney Tunes Golden Collection". And don't try to cut even more corners hoping to get cartoons. To date, exactl one of those mediocre [[VanillaEdition Woody Woodpecker short has fallen into the public domain cartoon collections]] to get them. The only one of Woody's shorts you'll ever find in those is domain, "Pantry Panic", which and it is the only Woody Woodpecker cartoon in the public domain to date.
considered a staple of many [[VanillaEdition bargain bin VHS and DVDs.]]
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